11 Top tips for retargeting in Facebook


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retargeting in Facebook

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Facebook is a well-rounded medium with most of the digital marketing tools you need, and you’d be missing out if you’re not advertising on it. But we’re only expecting the competition to get tougher in the coming years. Luckily, retargeting ads for Facebook is here to help you step up your game.

Facebook retargeting ads are one of the important components of Facebook advertising. It is a powerful tool to build people’s trust in your business and follow through with the user intent.

Whether you’ve been running Facebook retargeting campaigns for a while now and aiming for a higher ROI or just starting to set up retargeting ads on Facebook, our 11 top tips on how to retarget on Facebook will help you refine your best marketing practices.

What is Facebook retargeting?

Facebook Retargeting is a form of PPC marketing strategy that targets users who have interacted with your brand in some way in the past. These audiences may be existing customers or prospective leads and contacts – referred to as warm audiences.

Retargeting works by consolidating your warm audiences and grouping them in customer lists so you can serve customized ads to them. These ads aim to re-engage your audience with your brand and guide them to your end goal (signing up for your newsletter, buying your service/product, etc.).

Facebook has categorized past interactions depending on where the data was collected. You can select your custom audience list from the following sources:

  • Meta Sources – Meta collects user interactions from Facebook and related apps like Instagram. It will register user activity as they follow or interact with your Facebook page or engage with the following:
    • Video
    • Lead form
    • Instant experience
    • Shopping
    • Instagram account
    • Events
    • Facebook page
    • On-Facebook Listings
  • Your Sources – You can also create retargeted ads based on the data you gathered. This includes user interactions that come from the following:
    • Website
    • App Activity
    • Catalog
    • Customer List – email, contact
    • Offline activity

The key thing to remember about Facebook retargeting ads is that they aim to reach customers or users who have already visited your Facebook page or website and have some sort of familiarity with your products and what you do as a business.

This means that you don’t have to design your ads like you’re just introducing your brand to them. Instead, retargeting gives you the freedom to tailor ads that lead them further down the sales funnel since they have already shown interest in your product or service and already understand your brand.

How Facebook retargeting works

Advertising platforms like Facebook feature two main types of retargeting ads to successfully reach warm audiences: pixel-based retargeting and list-based retargeting. These retargeting methods differ mainly in how they collect user data. You can use each method to your advantage, depending on your marketing goals.

Pixel-based targeting

Pixel-based targeting is the most common type of retargeting on Facebook. This method uses a Meta pixel – a piece of code written in JavaScript that you have to add to your website or landing page. It serves as a way for Facebook to collect user data in the form of cookies. However, it won’t be able to collect the data prior to its inclusion in your website code.

A retargeting pixel, like Metal pixels, is a way to identify the users who have visited your website even after they leave your website. This way, once they return, you can better personalize their user experience.

If you have browsed through third-party websites lately, you probably noticed the prompt to accept cookies. This cookie stores data like your unique ID along with your name, address, or other data that you leave as you browse through the website. The cookie/pixel is then used by retargeting platforms to know which is best to serve to a user based on their history.

Although iOS 14 lessened the effectiveness of this method, you can still leverage the data that the pixel collects to deliver high quality targeted ads to your followers.

List-based targeting

List-based targeting requires contact details like email addresses or customer lists you previously collected from your customers. Using this list, Facebook will try to match profiles from their user database to find customers for retargeting.

Meta has a guide on how to format your customer list to successfully upload it to your Ads Manager. It also promises to encrypt your data for privacy and not to share it with anyone without your permission.

One downside of list-based targeting is that it doesn’t guarantee a match to your customers since some people use different email addresses to register to different accounts.

Some advertisers also refer to this method as remarketing. Meanwhile, some people use retargeting and remarketing interchangeably. However, it is essential to note that remarketing deals more with reigniting inactive customers rather than showing your ads to warm audiences to guide them to purchase your products or services.

Benefits of Facebook retargeting

It’s not an understatement to say that everyone who advertises on Facebook must try marketing with Retargeting ads. After all, it involves less risk and more guaranteed ROI than chasing cold leads.

Here’s our rundown of the benefits of Facebook Retargeting that makes it a must in Facebook advertising:

1. Drives higher conversion rates

Imagine talking to a stranger against talking to an acquaintance. With an acquaintance, you feel a certain level of familiarity, making it a little easier to carry on a conversation. This is what retargeted ads aim to imitate.

Businesses aspire to make a friend with their audiences and produce repeat customers. Retargeted ads make this possible by finding the audience that are more likely to convert into sales or leads.

2. Personalised advertising is more powerful

People like authenticity and familiarity. Personalized ads reflect people’s interests and are, therefore, far more engaging.

Retargeting just makes sure they see ads they already showed interest in. This way, their curiosity is continuously satisfied as they contribute to increased brand awareness.

3. Build brand loyalty

Appearing more in their ads when it matters as they get more familiar with your brand and can help develop and reinforce brand loyalty.

4. Upsell and cross sell to existing customers

Retargeted ads are useful if you want to reach existing customers. You can use these ads to remind them of their past purchases, showcase new products and services, and upsell or cross sell your other products.

5. Reduce cart abandonment

The average cart abandonment rate is 70%. Using retargeted ads, you can remind your users to check out their items or offer incentives that can entice them into purchasing their cart items.

6. Cost-effective - improving ROI

As we previously emphasized, retargeted ads will connect you to the audiences that already have some sort of exposure to your brand. This means that you don’t need to invest more money to acquaint your brand with them.

With a hyper-targeted audience, you increase your return on ad spend as you focus only on guiding them through their customer journey.

Facebook retargeting tips

Knowing the benefits of Facebook ad retargeting is essential to understand how much you should focus your marketing efforts on it. However, it’s also important to familiarize yourself with the best practices you can follow to further help the effectiveness of your ad strategy.

Here are some of the best practical tips for retargeting on Facebook according to the platform’s current advertising capability.

1. Include special offers for retargeting audiences

Each user has their own reasons for not purchasing your product or service last time. By introducing special offers like exclusive discounts into retargeting ads, you can better entice your audience to reconsider.

These incentives can also give them another reason to purchase, especially if their reluctance comes from a lack of budget.

2. Consider each phase of the buyer journey/funnel

Your prospective buyers can be in different stages of their customer journey. To appeal to each of them, it’s beneficial to customize their ads based on their history.

For example, you may have audiences who stopped browsing after your landing page, on the products page, or some might have added to cart but left without checking out. By analyzing your audience’s data, you can create an ad that’s more personal and is focused on getting them closer, if not into conversion.

3. Use dynamic remarketing ads

Dynamic ads or adaptable ads enable you to promote all of your products on Facebook, Instagram, and the Audience Network without creating individual ads for each of them.

Instead, these ads use a template that will automatically replace images with different products based on relevance and user data. This way, you can retarget the right products to the right people.

4. Use the Facebook pixels to uncover high value website traffic

If you have your own business website, you can use Facebook pixels or Meta pixels to scour your website for information and track user activity.

With pixels, you can retrieve and analyze Facebook ad data, such as leads generated from an ad campaign or the products sold via a specific ad. This can give you a good picture of how effective your ads are so far.

It will also help you get in touch with users who have a higher chance to convert based on their actions.

5. Exclude users who have converted

Facebook gives you flexible options when it comes to creating custom audiences for your retargeted ads.

More often than not, it is best to exclude people who have recently already taken the action you want them to: either they purchased a service or product, signed up for your services, or subscribed to your app.

Users who just purchased your products might not be taking the same action for a while. Therefore, these audiences are best excluded from your retargeted ads.

Some experts recommend excluding customers converted in the past 90 days, some 30 days. Ultimately, this will depend on the type of your products or services.

6. Refresh ad creative

Because you have a smaller audience in retargeted ads, there’s a greater chance that they will view your ads more often. However, you need to be careful not to overwhelm or exhaust them with your ads.

To combat this potential ad fatigue, timely refresh your ad creative or change up your offers. Using frequency caps can also help you avoid negative ad impact.

How many ads are too much will depend on your audience. Monitor and analyze your ad performance accordingly so you know when will be the best time to adjust your ads.

7. Use frequency caps

Facebook Advertising introduced ad frequency caps to prevent flooding the same audiences with the same ads. A frequency cap limits the number of times your ad would be shown to a user within a period of time.

Retargeted ads are known for its higher ROI while maintaining a lower budget. However, if you’re oversaturating your target audience, you are more prone to overspending and customer ad fatigue. Knowing your ideal ad frequency will not only make sure that your audience remembers your brand but also ensure that they will not be overwhelmed.

Plan out your retargeting ad campaigns carefully so you won’t annoy or scare your customers away by showing them too much of your business.

8. Create a sense of urgency

How you craft your copy can influence your audience’s actions. One of the tactics marketers use is creating a sense of urgency or scarcity for their Facebook ad retargeting campaigns. Try playing with urgent, time-related terms such as the following:

  • Hurry
  • Act now
  • Last chance
  • Don’t miss out

This will encourage your customers to buy now and not later. Limited offers can also appeal to your audience’s FOMO or fear of missing out.

For cart abandoners, you can also try setting a time limit on how long they can keep these items in their cart to motivate your customers to finish their transactions.

9. Adjust call to action

Call to action (CTA) is a vital part of any ad copy. They are a proven way to relay a clearer message to your audience so they know what actions they should take after seeing your ads.

Adjust your call to action so your words won’t sound as if you are talking to new customers. We recommend you use different CTAs for people that have established familiarity with your brand.

Use stronger CTAs to urge them to convert or complete the purchase. Also, consider using the appropriate words based on your user’s stage in the sales funnel and/or previous interactions.

10. Tell people they are being retargeted

Your ad copy can make or break your campaign. For retargeted ads, it’s helpful to be transparent and tell your audience that you are retargeting them. This will foster your brand’s connection with your users better.

However, some of your audience will be more sensitive about ads that are based on their past online activity. For some of your customers, there is a fine line between honesty and coming off as creepy. They want to feel that you respect privacy, so you have to be careful with your ad copy.
Create a copy that is honest about retargeting and personalized according to the last action your prospective customer took before leaving your website.

Some examples include the following:

  • You might like these
  • You have items in your cart

11. Experiment with meta sources

The iOS 14 update gave iPhone users a choice to opt out of data sharing every time they download an app. Since then, advertisers have felt the impact of being cut from users’ data and activity. They noticed that while retargeted ads are still effective, they now have fewer data to rely on.

Luckily, you can still use the different Meta Sources available on your Ads Manager. Since Facebook tracks all activity and data across their platform, they can give you enough information to launch effective retargeting ad campaigns. You can experiment with creating a custom list of audiences from these sources and create dynamic retargeting ads for them.

Since Facebook is mainly for entertainment, visiting your website rather than watching your Facebook videos or liking your Page might show much deeper user intent. However, you can make your ads, as well as your content, help each other to still deliver a clear message.

Wrapping it up

Facebook retargeting ads is a valuable and powerful tool to connect and reintroduce your brand to an already familiar audience. It can help your marketing strategy by increasing your return on ad spend as well as your ad conversion rate.

However, a retargeting campaign can go only as far as your advertising technique and best practices. With our practical tips on Facebook retargeting, we hope you got the knowledge you need to start more effective retargeting ad campaigns.

Great marketers work hand in hand with automated Facebook reporting tools to save time and effort. At Reporting Ninja, we’ll handle all your reporting needs so you can focus on creating the best retargeted ads. Try out our Facebook Ads Reporting tool by signing up for our free trial today.

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